<Insert Kia joke here>

I’ll head off those who tell me Kias are a piece of crap. Yes, I know they can be lemons. For almost two years, mine has been pretty good. I was moving from NYC to VA and needed a car quick - with no savings and mediocre credit, I needed a cheap car. So I got a Kia. Don’t lecture me on my choice. If I could do it again, I’d search for a used Honda and pay a little more.

I’m having issues with the damn car. About six months ago, I noticed that on the highway, it would shake, make a loud squealing noise, and pull sharply to the right on me. At one point on the way home from work, it got to the point where I was afraid to drive it. I pulled over, called a tow truck and had my husband come get me. The dealership looked at the car and said they couldn’t find anything. When I asked if they’d taken it out on the highway, they said no, but they’d driven it at about 60 MPH and didn’t notice anything. Not wanting to cause problems, I took the car home. The problem seemed to disappear.

It started again four months ago. I was taking the car in for an oil change, so I asked them to look at it. Again, they said they found nothing. Again, I was a chickenshit and didn’t challenge them.

Fast-Forward to Friday night. I’m on my way to Michigan from Ohio - about sixty miles outside of Toledo, it starts shaking above FORTY MPH, pulling sharply to the right, and there’s a smell of burning rubber. So I flipped. I had to pull off of the Ohio Turnpike into a Chevy dealership, but of course, their service department was closed. Luckily, a salesperson was still there, so he helped me give the woman at Kia’s 800 number my location and directed me to a McDonalds where I’d be safe. I went there and my car has been towed an hour and a half away from home. I have a job interview tomorrow night and no car. My husband and I have figured out a loose way to share our one car right now, but I’m going to have to call our local Kia dealership and fight with them for a rental car (they wouldn’t give me one last time even though it’s part of my warranty). If worse comes to worst, I’ll have to go rent a car from Enterprise.

But if they don’t fucking fix the car this time, I will refuse to take the car back until they take it ON THE HIGHWAY and fix it like I’ve requested. My weekend was ruined, and now we’ve got to go 85 miles away to get the damn car back. I’m hoping the service department here is just worthless and this other dealership will find the issue and fix it because I will not trade the rental car for my car until the problem has been solved. I’m tired of being on the highway and being scared that my car is going to pull out of my control and I’ll end up causing an accident.

How difficult is it to be competent, for hell’s sake?


So, just to be clear here, what you’re saying is that in addition to building crappy cars, Kia does its best to weasel out of living up to their loudly touted warrantee? Interesting.

Incidentally, the problem sounds like it has something to do with the front suspension or steering linkage - bad wheel alignment, essentially. Are the front tires wearing unevenly?

I don’t know if they’re trying to weasel out of it, or if they’re just clueless in the service area. Either way, it pisses me off. And they WILL be giving me a rental car. I’ve decided. If I have to go down to the local dealership and raise hell until they do, I will. We can not afford a rental car right now (we’re in the process of buying a house), and I’ll be damned if I have to shell out money for their problem.

I’m not sure what’s going on with it - my dad thinks that my right front tire might be loose, which is why he told me to get off the road last night. I’ll mention both of those things to them, though - I just want my car fixed. We’ll get rid of it in a couple of years, but it’s gotta last me at least another 2-3 years.


Sounds like every other car dealer to me!

Actually, the problem could be anything from the transmission to the brakes to wheel balance and alignment and steering-kinda like the dodge/jeep “death wobble”. Anything could and can cause the problem, so it’s best not to speculate.


Don’t get me wrong. I’m not defending Kia. They indeed are full of shit and have treated you horribly. But competence? You’ve been a pretty incompetent consumer, I’m sorry to say. You said it yourself. You’ve let them get away with all this just because you didn’t want to make waves. Take a stand. Insist on your rights. You bought a warranty. Use it.

No, you’re right. I should have stood up for myself from the beginning, but when they said they couldn’t find anything the first time, I wondered if it was in my head. Now I know it’s not, so I will be standing my ground this time. I just don’t like to be considered a ‘troublemaker’, so I meekly accepted what they told me and went on my merrry way. It’s not going to happen again.


Yeah, my Spectra is making an odd growling noise whenever it’s at a steady RPM rate.

I figure I’ll wait till the motor falls out of the dang thing before I take it back to the dealership.

I can’t agree. Are you suggesting that Kia isn’t required to live up to its contractual obligations unless people make a scene about it when they don’t? Bullpucky.

Now, it might be the case that we ought to expect car dealerships to try to get away with providing suboptimal service, simply on the grounds that they often do. But that doesn’t mean that it’s somehow being an “incompetent consumer” if a person doesn’t take a confrontational approach. The onus is on the dealership to provide the service, regardless of the car owner’s demeanour.

You should have insisted that they go on a diagnostic drive with you while you show the exact situations that it happens. That would have taken care of the problem the first time.

I drive a Kia Shuma. A friend’s sister drives one too. Nothing wrong with either of them. They’re good basic cars.

I suppose a “squeaky wheel” joke at this point would be akin to shooting fish in a barrel.

Good for you!

You must have me confused with someone else. I would never have suggested that their breach was mitigated by her incompetence. What I said (and she agreed) was that both happened: they breached, and she folded. She says she won’t let them get away with it again.

Could be. I can never get past the notion that KIA means Killed In Action. My military background, don’t you know.

Jeez, when I read this, I thought you meant the car suddenly flipped over!

Simple solution: Maybach. :smiley:

Hmmm, Kia jokes…

Good thing you saved all that money so you can afford cabfare.

I happened to rent a Korean car last year-it was a DAEWOO! The car was a pieceof junk-it made a lot of noise, and everything seemed cheap and tinny-when you lowered/raised the windows, the motors gave a out a strange grinding noise. The radio was tinny and cheap, and the padding in the seats was lumpy and starting to collapse.
My guess is that the Koreans are trying desperately to compete, and have chosen the “low cost” route. Sure, you can save money by buying a Korean car-but the thing will be in a junkyard within 5 years. Think about it-you just don’t see many old korean cars on the road-there is a reason for this! When you make a LOT of the parts of a car out of cheap plastic, things break! And another thing I’ve noticed-it is very hard to get parts for Korean cars-and they are expensive! My guess is that the aftermarket suppliers do naot make many parts for these cars (aside from oil filters and wiper baldes) because they don’t see these cars as lasting long enough to REQUIRE replacement parts-think about THAT!

Q: Why do KIAs have heated rear windows?

A: To keep your hands warm while you’re pushing.

DING! winner!
Look I’m not trying to defend the dealership here, but sometimes problems don’t always occur on a mechanics test drive. According to the OP this is not a problem that oocurs on every drive cycle.

Take the car to the dealership insist that someone go with you on a test drive. Demonstrate the problem, leave the car for repair. When picking up the car, repeat the test drive.

May I also suggest that you take the time to type out a note describing as best you can the problem, when it occurs and exactly what happens and give that to the service writer to attach to the repair order. Mechanics love this, it gives us a chance to hear exactly what has gone wrong, instead of a filtered version from the service writer. [hint] Leave out terms like Fucking car :slight_smile: